The system was simple. Everyone understood it. Books were for burning, along with the houses in which they were hidden. Guy Montag was a fireman whose job it was to start fires. And he enjoyed his job. He had been a fireman for ten years, and he had never questioned the pleasure of the midnight runs or the joy of watching pages consumed by flames, never questioned anything until he met a seventeen-year-old girl who told him of a past when people were not afraid. Then Guy met a professor who told him of a future in which people could think. And Guy Montag suddenly realized what he had to do.
©1981 Ray Bradbury (P)2010 Tantor
I don't remember the last time I remember reading such a beautiful book, filled with magnificent prose that conjured up moving images.
Though I truly enjoyed the story and Mr. Hoye's narration, I can't bring myself to give the story itself a five. I felt the use of "swearing" was over used in some instances in place of more precise descriptions or dialog. I also felt some of the internal dialogue of the main character was a bit rambling in one or two instances. With all the said, I understand why it is a classic and was very glad to have finally read it.
I am looking for ways to get more out of my day. This is one of my tools. One the way to Millionaire status.
i could go on about this book, but if you read it and understood it you will realise that the title of this review says it all.
From 1953--Bradbury didn't like Nazi book burning and had McCarthy issues. Lots of interesting ideas like an inability to understand literature. The pen is mightier than the sword only if we can read I suppose. Compare with Brave New World or 1984.
This is Ray Bradbury's classic tale of authoritarian government out of control. The only entertainment available to the population is a modern version of TV called the "wall." But it is strictly controlled content. Books ranging from Tom Sawyer to the Bible are banned because they are hurtful to certain groups of people. This is done to keep the population content and peaceful.
When banned books are reported, the firemen are called to burn them.
The print version was a little easier to follow because our main character is having some heated internal debates over the ethics of burning these books. Some of that internal dialog gets confusing as to what is and is not being said.
This book was ok once but I doubt I will go through it again.
1. Dystopia novel. Futuristic. Lots of problems with the government in the future.
2. They don't give good history anymore. Montag is a fireman. but he goes around and burns the books in the houses that are now completely fireproof. Which is what he believes all firemen have done.
3. The book is about books. Lots of great quotes about the value of literature.
4. I didn't know this until after I read, but Bradbury was mostly self educated through reading. He graduated from a los angeles high school and never went to college.
5. Interesting to see the way he describes the people who continue to read. They are not part of the system, so they are not particularly wealthy, or successful, but they are more alive than any other human being. It really inspires me to continue reading, continue wondering about the world.
"Give the people contests they win by remembering the words to more popular songs or the names of state capitals or how much corn Iowa grew last year. Cram them full of noncombustible data, chock them so damned full of ‘facts’ they feel stuffed, but absolutely ‘brilliant’ with information. Then they’ll feel they’re thinking, they’ll get a sense of motion without moving....Don’t give them any slippery stuff like philosophy or sociology to tie things up with."
"Stuff your eyes with wonder,’ he said, ‘live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal."
First, the narrator was outstanding. He made listening exciting. I had read the print version of this book before and had seen the mediocre film version many years ago. This narrator could not have been better. It is worth the time just to hear what a superb job he did.
That this was written so early in Ray Bradbury's career is amazing. Like so many of the stories in "The Illustrated Man," they have both surface interest and many layers of deeper meaning.
This is a book about anomie, about narcissism, about the hypnotic effect of technology, media and entertainment, about individuality versus collectivism, about the lure of conformity. In some ways it resembles the theme of the film "The Truman Show," in the way it presents vicarious experiencing as an alternative to authentic experiencing.
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to it and strongly recommend it, even to those who have read the printed version earlier. I especially recommend it to anyone who read Fahrenheit 451 in high school and who is now an adult. You will find much more there now than you did then.
Happiness through forced equality. Remove the books that drive competing points to view and stupefy the populace through reality tv shows. Montag had had his eyes open to the horror of his existence that not only holds himself down but as a fireman burning books does his part to lower society to the lowest common denominator.
Although the written version is still better, this audio version was great for my son with processing issues. It made his summer homework much easier. He seemed to really enjoy this classic instead of resenting it because of a struggle to read it.
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